The Fruit You Didn’t Know Could Help You Sleep Better
Banana Before Bed – Eating a banana before bed helps you get a good night’s sleep.
There are many foods that we consider good for dinner or bedtime snacks. But did you know that that this curvy yellow fruit should be part of your meal before bed?
We all know that a banana has only a few calories, and thus including it in our diet will help stabilize weight gain. But apart from helping lose weight, what else does a banana do? How can it help with one’s sleep quality?
A banana is rich in potassium . This mineral supports our body’s function, and this includes, muscle contractions, fluid balance, transmission of nerve signals, and even different chemical reactions.
It has also been shown to be effective for those with high blood pressure. Eating a banana is high in the mineral that can lower blood pressure. Those who suffer high blood pressure are advised to take at least 3500-5000 mg of potassium daily. Apart from helping the body maintain its blood pressure, it is also said to help heart disease. It plays a role in regulating one’s cognitive functioning and cardiovascular health.
With sleeping, this mineral is beneficial because it is also a muscle relaxant. Therefore, a banana—high in potassium—is one fruit that can help make your tired body feel good. Muscle spasms typically occur at night, and the culprit can often be a potassium deficiency. When you are suffering from a lack of potassium, you may find yourself tossing and turning at night due to muscle spasm and possibly even heart irregularities.
That’s not the only reason eating a banana before bed helps improve sleep quality. Apart from potassium, a banana also has magnesium. Magnesium assists our body in regulating muscle function and even improving bone mass. It also helps in stabilizing one’s mood. This mineral is good at keeping the body’s stress-response system at a reasonable level. Lack of magnesium has been connected with high levels of stress and anxiety. In fact, not having enough magnesium can even influence gut health.
So, how does this nutrient help with one’s sleep? Apart from stress and anxiety, magnesium deficiency is linked to insomnia. If you have low magnesium levels, you may have disturbed sleep or even restless nights.
It also works as a muscle relaxant which helps promote a good night’s rest by maintaining one’s levels of GABA (this is a neurotransmitter that supports regular sleep). Low levels of this neurotransmitter can make one anxious and experience difficulty in relaxing. GABA incites one to relax and have a good night’s sleep.
People who take magnesium or simply eat a banana before bed can see improved sleep, as magnesium helps alleviate insomnia, especially with those suffering from a sleeping disorder called restless leg syndrome.
Moreover, bananas contain the amino acid called tryptophan. When consumed, this amino acid gets turned into serotonin and melatonin, which in turn can help calm your mood. Melatonin can help induce sleep and give you a good night’s rest as it assists our body in keeping its internal clock.
Snack on this fruit as part of your late night meal and it can help you get a better night’s sleep. The minerals found in a banana have been shown to have muscle relaxant as well as mood stabilizer effects; simply put, this yellow fruit helps give you a good night’s sleep.
However, having a banana before bed is not the only food or drink that can help you have a restful sleep. There are other foods that can help make falling asleep easier. Some of those that you could try during dinner are cherries (even cherry juice and tart cherry), oatmeal, and of course, milk .
Cherries are also rich in melatonin, which helps promote a good night’s sleep. Sweet potato is another food said to help promote good sleep. This vegetable also contains potassium which can give it muscle relaxant properties, helping you get that peaceful sleep. Papaya, beans, and even regular potatoes are also foods that are rich in potassium.
Milk has always been a favorite — probably even since you were young. You might think that drinking milk to help with sleep is just an urban legend, but there is truth to it. Just like a banana, milk also has the amino acid tryptophan. You might want to try drinking milk and eating a banana before bed to help you have a good night’s rest.
If you really want to help steer clear of having a restless night, then say no to coffee, wine, or cheeseburgers in the hours before sleeping. This is because caffeine tends to keep us awake as it is a stimulant, alcohol hurts our sleep, and red meat can lead to sleep problems.
Having a pot, or even just a cup of coffee, that has even a few milligrams of caffeine can undoubtedly keep you awake. Even though people might be used to coffee, drinking too much caffeine can really affect one’s sleeping pattern. The advice is to steer clear from coffee altogether. Another type of drink you should resist is energy drinks such as Red Bull. This is because they tend to be caffeine-rich, which places it into the category of stimulant, just like coffee. Mountain Dew and other sodas also tend to have caffeine. Best to have a can or bottle of your favorite energy drink or soda sometime during the day if you’re going to have one.
Wine metabolizes in our system fast. In fact, one study has shown that mixing wine together with soda—even one that is caffeine-free—can keep up a person for about 15 minutes.
So, banana, cherry, sweet potato, potato and such are just some of the foods that you can include in your nighttime meal. Drinks that you know contain stimulants should not be part of your dinner, unless you know you have a long night ahead of you.
When hunger pangs get you, whether it be late at night or you are about to sleep, do not let your stomach rumble. Eat a banana before bed or even any of the foods we mentioned and you can sleep soundly knowing that you’re feeding your body healthy, sleep-friendly foods.
Banana Before Bed Resources;
 Health; Best and Worst Foods for Sleep.
 Forbes; 5 Surprising Foods That Help You Sleep, Melanie Haiken.a
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